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Thread: Any tips for filing the edge off a katana?

  1. #1

    Any tips for filing the edge off a katana?

    Hi all.

    A couple months ago, I picked up this sword:

    Fit and finish leave much to be desired (burrs on the tsuba, nicks on the blade itself), but I really like the geometry and the balance. Compared to my iaito, the handling is amazing.

    Considering the nicks -- and the relatively low price point -- I was thinking about filing the edge dull and just using it as an iaito.

    Has anyone ever done anything like this before? Any tips and tricks?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Blue Ridge, Texas
    Lock it in a vice and file at 90 degree angle to dull, then smooth it off. Don't try to do it without the vice as it's very easy to cut yourself doing that. If you're planning on using it for daily practice, you need to remove the handle and carefully inspect the tsuka for cracks as that tends to be an issue with inexpensive swords. Make sure your instructor is ok with you using it in place of your iaito.
    Paul Smith
    "Keep the sharp side and the
    pointy end between you and
    your opponent"

  3. #3
    Just finished the job on a Hanwei Paul Chen blade - folded Swedish powdered steel K120C. Started with a 150 grit diamond stone and then on to 600 grit. A tool steel file just bounced off the edge. Did habaki to kissaki strokes by holding stone at 45 degrees and slide lengthwise while moving stone perpendicular, to keep stone surface in motion the whole stroke. Finished with a 1200 diamond curved chisel sharpener to round the edges.

    The feel told me the edge was uniformly hardened. I'm a novice with blades but experienced with metalwork, so was impressed with the uniformity of the blade edge.


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